Who was John Salathé? Previously Unpublished Story by Allen Steck


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Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Jul 7, 2015 - 06:37pm PT
Great stories - many laughs and famous climbs.
Thanks for sharing.

Trad climber
Fanta Se
Jul 7, 2015 - 06:44pm PT

Trad climber
Jul 7, 2015 - 07:21pm PT
Fascinating writing! Sign me up for a book.

Gym climber
Jul 7, 2015 - 07:35pm PT
WOW. More on Steck-Salathe, please.

Social climber
Elk Grove, California
Jul 7, 2015 - 07:35pm PT
Their route on Sentinel was a rite of passage for so many of us BITD, my partner and I must have done the thousandth something ascent, thirty years after those 'masters' pioneered the route.

“Nick,” he says, “you don’t haf an anchor.” “That’s right,” John, “there’s no anchor.” “Dot’s not safe,” says John, “you should always haf an anchor.”

Classic? No... that pre-dates Classic.

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Jul 7, 2015 - 07:40pm PT
Steck Salathe....quintessential Yosemite! I've done it three times in the past five years. Iconic climb rightly climbed by icons.
John Morton

Jul 7, 2015 - 07:44pm PT
Thanks Chris, and thanks Steve for your efforts on behalf of Steck. Al's memory of picturesque detail and powers of description always kept me on the edge of my seat, and asking for more.

Things to include: observations of the climbing greats of the forties and fifies; the approach from the sea to Mt. Waddington, 1950; the march to Makalu 1954; cycling between climbs in Europe just after the war; reconnoitering destinations for Mountain Travel with Roper. (Well maybe "you had to be there" in his presence for those campfire stories.) Of course the Hummingbird and other great climbs, but I would be happy with almost anything he cares to share.

john hansen

Jul 7, 2015 - 08:25pm PT
Fantastic stuff. Would love to read the book.
Flip Flop

Earth Planet, Universe
Jul 7, 2015 - 08:46pm PT
zuper! Hura gut und garnische ture. awesome. i was lucky to grab a tr from Mr. Steck at Turtle Rock once a while back. was happy to say that the Steck-Salathe Narrows was the most physically challenging thing that i'd done to date. More please!

Social climber
Jul 7, 2015 - 09:14pm PT
hey there say, chris... wow, i missed the post for this... just SAW it in the newsletter... very nice share for us all... very thankful that allen steck shared, too...

great stuff here... did not even get to read it all yet, :))
but will...
Jr Birdman

Trad climber
Boulder, CO
Jul 8, 2015 - 10:08am PT
Allen, yes! Please do this! It would be a major contribution to climbing history, and promises to provide huge insights to micro glimpses into one of the greatest, yet least known pioneers in Yosemite Climbing. And Thank You for considering taking on this huge project!

Mountain climber
there and back again
Jul 8, 2015 - 10:42am PT
THIS is what supertopo is all about!

Allen so kind of you to give us a sneak preview of your upcoming book. I can't wait for it to be published.

I love your Salethe accent. Always wanted to go to slab city.

Take care my friend. "Write on"
Daniel McClure

Trad climber
Jul 8, 2015 - 07:18pm PT
Very moving and enjoyable read. I find it so very interesting to see how rock climbing equipment and techniques have changed over the years. But the spirt and adventure lives on and on thru the ages. Sure love climbing. And sure love reading about John Salathe. And thank you Allen Steck for this read. That is a big YES from me for more.

Gnome Ofthe Diabase

Out Of Bed
Jul 9, 2015 - 08:29am PT
Of course, I think many of us will buy this or it will be the first item on the X-mas list.
any lover of the valley loves to hear the stories about the climbs and the people who put life on the shelf to spend as much of their lives on the shelves and corners, high off the ground in Yosemite as was possible.

Publish, book signing at face lift and the AAC black tie affair too.

Social climber
Jul 10, 2015 - 06:22pm PT
That was about as good as it gets--on "yust vun apple a day" for no less.
You write it and I'll buy it for sure--Salathe-the bridge between the Beats and the Hippies and the RVers--what a stud!
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
North wet, and Da souf
Jul 10, 2015 - 06:44pm PT
Really nice piece Chris
Brian in SLC

Social climber
Salt Lake City, UT
Jul 10, 2015 - 06:58pm PT
Wow...great read!

Social climber
Elk Grove, California
Jul 10, 2015 - 11:44pm PT
I always thought it was the other way around...
Whenever I ate the fermented bean concoction,
da wumans no longer vanted da mans!

Sport climber
San Diego
Jul 11, 2015 - 07:01am PT
This is great. Would love to see more stories.
Bad Climber

Jul 11, 2015 - 08:33am PT
Hey, Chris:

This is the best of SuperTopo. We've GOT to get Mr. Steck to finish this project. I will happily purchase/pre-order a book. We've got to get these stories down.

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